As the Swans and Hawks prepare to do battle for the 2014 AFL Premiership on Saturday, footy fans far and wide will be planning their Grand Finals celebrations. More than a third (35%) of Australians 18+ watch the AFL Grand Final on TV, with many getting together with friends and family for the occasion. What better excuse to stoke up the BBQ and enjoy a social drink? But what do AFL supporters like to drink? Considering that 14 of the 18 AFL teams are sponsored by an alcohol brand or retailer, it seems an apt time to take a look at the booze preferences of AFL fans.
In the year to June 2014, supporters of most AFL teams (with the exception of Greater Western Sydney, Western Bulldogs and Port Adelaide) were more likely than the average Australian adult to have drunk alcohol in an average four weeks.
Distinguishing themselves as the AFL’s most avid rum and beer drinkers are supporters of the Brisbane Lions. Not only are they a hefty one-and-a-half times more likely than the average Aussie to drink rum in an average four weeks, but they’re also 29% more likely to drink premium/imported beer and 46% more likely to drink non-premium/imported beer in the same period. Incidentally, the Lions are sponsored by beer brand Carlton Draught.
Which AFL team’s supporters are more likely to drink which kind of alcohol?
Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), July 2013 – June 2014 (n=18,133). This chart shows the index of AFL supporters compared to the population average in terms of alcohol type drunk in an average 4 weeks, with 100 being the average
Meanwhile, Sydney Swans fans are almost as likely as Lions supporters to drink beer in an average four weeks, and most likely of all teams’ supporters to drink liqueur. While not sponsored by a beer or liqueur brand, the Swans do count liquor retailer Cellarbrations among their sponsors.
With a taste for the good stuff, Hawthorn supporters are 55% more likely than the average Aussie (and other teams’ fans) to drink premium beer in an average four weeks.
When it comes to wine, Melbourne Demons fans lead the league: in any given four weeks, they are 76% more likely than the average Aussie to drink red wine, 56% more likely to have drunk white wine, and 92% to have drunk champagne/sparkling wine. No doubt the team’s sponsor Tyrell’s Wines would be pleased to hear this.
While cider may be experiencing a boom among Australian drinkers right now, supporters of most AFL teams come in below average for this particular beverage. However, fans of the Adelaide Crows stand out for being 57% more likely than the average Aussie to drink cider in a four-week period. Three of the Crows’ numerous corporate partners are alcohol brands (more than any other team) but none of them produce cider.
Angela Smith, Group Account Director, Roy Morgan Research, says:
“The AFL Grand Final is one of the key events in the Australian sporting calendar, and a huge social occasion for many footy fans, who get together with friends and family to watch the match over a few drinks and snacks. As our data reveals, some teams’ supporters are more likely to drink certain types of beverage than other teams’ supporters, and occasionally their alcohol preferences even coincide with their team’s sponsors.
“For example, Roy Morgan data shows that Tyrell’s Wine is an ideal sponsor for Melbourne Demons, whose fans are more likely than any others to drink wine in an average four weeks. In fact, of all AFL supporters, Demons fans are the most likely to have drunk any alcohol in an average four-week period — along with St Kilda Saints fans. Yet the Saints do not have any alcohol sponsors. Could this be an opportunity for a canny booze brand in the market for an AFL team to partner with?
“Of course, demographics play more of a role in a person’s drinking habits than their footy allegiances — and for this reason, it’s no surprise that Carlton Draught is one of the AFL’s overall major partners. Not only do men outnumber women by about three to one in terms of beer drinking in any given four weeks, but most teams’ fan bases are comprised of more men than women.
“Of course, alcohol is certainly not necessary to enjoy the Grand Final, and here at Roy Morgan Research we advise drinking responsibly at all times!”
Roy Morgan Research
Roy Morgan Research is Australia's best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
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